Hello and welcome to our community! Is this your first visit?
Register

Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    130

    US Probation Officer- Not on USA Jobs

    Any US Probation Officers who can shed light on this:

    Jobs are posted on the USA Courts website, but not on USA Jobs. Are these dummy posts, or are they legitimate vacancy announcements? I'm thinking about applying to the Greenville, NC posting, but I don't want to waste my time.
    There are no matching announcements on USA Jobs. There is one posting for USA Probation Officer on USA Jobs but it's for a position in Arizona and it says "0 Vacancies". Not sure what that means.

    Also, what type of experience did you have before you were USPO? I'm a state PO now and this seems like a logical next step. Let me know, thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2000
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    5,320
    Hey, I just checked USAJOBS for you. The announcements are there. Go to advanced search and simply type in "Probation" under keyword search. Then click search.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    130
    Oh alright I was doing it a different way. Thanks. Does anyone know the series number for USPO?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Posts
    7,369
    If I recall they normally use 1811 or 1801 when posting on USAJOBS, but in actuality the Court System does not use the same job series as OPM for any career fields. The Court site is the better resource for PO and PO Assistant jobs because, at least in the past, only a few districts posted parallel announcements on USAJOBS.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    1
    What nsedet said, I'm always scouring uscourts.gov rather than USA jobs. The US Courts website seems to be more accurate.

    As far as it being a logical next step- don't think you could be more right. I'm still trying, viciously, to get on with a county here in AZ and applied for the US PO Assistant position out here but to no avail, yet. My old roomie did 3 years at the county level and is now a Fed PO. I also have a friend who retired with the Feds as a PO and it's def the place to be. Lots of work, but worth it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    90
    I'm a USPO. I would certainly check out the uscourts website, as it appears to be more accurate than usajobs.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Posts
    7,369
    I'd also suggest talking to some Federal POs if you haven't done so yet. Depending on your state and current agency, you may find Federal probation to be a very different world. Pay and benefits are better, but the work may not be what you are looking for if you are coming from a more aggressive, LE oriented agency. That's not a knock on Federal Probation, but it can be a very different job depending on what you are used to.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    130
    My state job now is mostly going to court, home visits, schools, facilities, and a ton of report writing and paperwork. Not so much LE or investigative work. A lot of it is as much work as you want to make it. I do a lot so I can get good experience.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    15
    I agree with nsedet. Try to talk with a USPO if possible. I went from a county probation officer to a state parole agent and the jobs are much more different. The state job is very aggressive with more discretion on the part of the agents. With the county, the judge pretty much had to be notified with any issues before any action could be taken. With the state, agents impose their special conditions at anytime during the supervision period and can sanction the offender as they please. Of course, if the sanction will involve a recommitment to a half-house or prison then a supervisor needs to be notified and authorize a warrant. With the state I am on the street everyday, have a take home car, make my own hours, carrry a state issued firearm, work with every level of law enforcement regularly, conduct raids on houses and bars, maintain the custody and care of offenders who have beem arrested and housed in our holding cell, do prisoner transports and much more. I get to wear jeans and a t-shirt everyday which is cool (saves on the dry cleaning bill). When I was with the county it was more of a 9-5 gig. I spent most of the time in court or in the office, only doing field work 1 day a week, that's if a departmet vehicle was available that day. We couldn't make any arrests or carry a firearm for our own protection. The court's warrant unit did most of the dirty work.

    I know in my area, the federal probation office tends to hire from the county level rather than the state. I guess because officers from both levels are employees of the court there are some similarities with how each operates. You won't be making arrests and chasing probation absconders around with fedetal probation. The US Marshals handle that aspect. Most districts throughout the country allow their officers to carry, but it is ultimately up to the president judge ofthat particular district.

    Now please don't take this wrong. By no means am I saying that one level of probation/parole is better than the other. For me, I like not being under the command of a judge. When you think about it, what does he/she know about supervising people and the challenges that come along with it. At my current job, all the higher ups were parole agents at one point who have climbed the ladder. They remember what it was like managing a caseload and how dangerous it can be when you're doing curfew checks by yourself at 11PM in some of the worst neighborhoods in the city.

    I will say this, federal probation officers are at the top of their game. They are always professional and efficient. Officers are held to as high standard. Nothing less than 100% is acceptable and I think that is awesome. It's a very prestigious environment as well. At my
    job, there are some people that barely do anything yet get paid every 2 weeks lime I do after I broke my back trying to do the right thing and work hard.

    In all honesty, the running and gunning thing is cool but it gets old after a while. My main focus now is about providing for my family. USPOs get paid fairly well. In my area, they max out at about $40 more than county probation officers and about $20 more than state parole agents. That a huge difference in pay. With that being said, I have tossed around the idea of applying for the job but am kind of on the fence. I'm not sure if I feel like starting over again for a 3rd time.

    Look into the job most definitely. I've never met a USPO who left the job before retirement. That's saying something right there.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    130
    Thanks for the reply. From what I can tell thats a pretty spot-on take on things.
    Your county job sounds a bit like my job. I am pretty independent but I certainly have people to answer to with judge being one of them.
    I also know what your saying about people not pulling their weight but still getting the same paycheck... Frustrating!
    Your parole gig sounds pretty sweet. I'd like to have a parole or probation job where I carried. As of now I'm going into the projects (literally) unarmed. Nothing stressful has happend so far but that doesn't mean it won't.
    I'm 25 yo now so I'm always trying to move up. I'm
    Going to start applying to some federal po jobs soon as I will move pretty much anywhere and feel like I would be happy doing that job.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    15
    Another thing to consider is specialized units. If your department has them apply to them. When I was in the county, we had our own division of presentence investigators. The federal probation office eats that up. They love presentence experience, especially a department that interprets the guidelines and makes solid sentencing recommendations. Some departments hae their POs simply interview the defendant and type up word for word what he/she said without any research or verification, and they have the district attorney's office suggest most of the sentencing options. To me that's not "investigation" work. Federal presentence reports are very in depth. I've had the opportunity to read few over the years and they are impressive to say the least.

    You're 24 years old and this is a great time to build up your resume for a USPO spot. Again, specialized units are helpful. Take any many trainings as you can and volunteer for everything. For example, assist with trainings, serve as a mentor for new hires (if they have a program there), be a emergency safety officer... The feds want people who stand out from the rest and give a little more than the rest. Compare it to an ivy league university; they only take the top of the class.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    130
    I will look more into the pre-sentencing stuff. There are some diversion programs that do that in my unit but that's another job and they are called "diversion officers". Still, it wouldn't be bad to learn that process.
    There is a pretty decent gang task force forming. It's funny how different political regimes put emphasis on things. I was told that years ago there was a huge push for gang management, then it went away, now it's coming back under the new governor. Things trickle down to the front lines: PO's and LE.
    The task force works with CO's inside facilities, LE, etc. It sounds pretty organized.
    I'm right with you on the training and getting "into" as much stuff as I can. Sounds like a good move.
    It sounds like you have a lot of good experience. Do a lot of guys from parole in your unit switch over to LE? It seems like the schedule would suck more as a police officer but there's a chance for overtime pay. Thoughts?

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    15
    In my state, agents with the parole board are classified as law enforcement. Parole here isn't part of a unit either, it is it's own entity. I know every state is different, so your agency may have another way of classifying probation and parole. As far as people leaving my agency to go to others, it's very rare. In fact, we get all the people from the other agencies. There are a ton of former local police officers. I'd say they make up a good majority of our workforce. There are some folks who were once state troopers, correctional officers, and lot of military men and women also. The former police like it because of the hours, it's a beautiful thing to go from shift work to making your own hours. And for the ones coming from the smaller police departments the salary, benefits, and pension are much better. We get overtime at my job, but it's depends on the unit you're in that determines how much is offered.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    130
    Good info. Thanks.
    Another quick question: do people typically come from the juvenile side? I'm currently a juvenile PO and was wondering if this would be looked at on the same level as adult by US Probation?


 

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •